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10:06am on Wednesday, 26th March, 2014:

Failing to Listen


Thanks to my Google vanity search, I saw this headline this morning on TechGump:

Someone wasn't listening at the presentation.

Fixer Studios are a dynamic and switched-on bunch of mainly ex-PopCap developers who started up last year with a view to making gamer-friendly games for casual platforms. One of their pioneering products is Sinister Dexter, which is a tweaked (that is to say, improved) version of a game called Spellbinder (among other things) that I designed in about 1977 and published in the postal games magazine I ran in those days, before I went to university.

A year later, when I went to university, I met Roy Trubshaw and started dabbling in MUD.

Spellbinder predates MUD and isn't a MUD, it's nothing like a MUD. You could use its spell-casting system in a MUD if you wanted, I guess, but then you could use Top Trumps if you wanted, too. Spellbinder — and hence Sinister Dexter — is a system enabling magical duels; MUDs are places. The graphics for Sinister Dexter are spot on, they really capture the mood of the game; the graphics for MUDs are non-existent except in the players' imaginations.

I wonder how much more of this we're going to see as the word about Sinister Dexter gets out? Maybe it'll be "Fixer Studios Tries Player Types with Sinister Dexter" next...

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Copyright © 2014 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).